In the wake of revelations he harassed women over the course of decades, movie mogul Harvey Weinstein has been fired by the remaining directors of The Weinstein Company, the influential firm he helped found.
A new report says Weinstein had reached at least eight settlements with women alleged to have been targets of his unwanted sex attempts, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Weinstein — a longtime power-player in the Democratic party — also had prominent Democrats such as U.S. senators Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer and Cory Booker distance themselves from him, turning campaign contributions from Weinstein over to charity.
Well-known actors such as Seth Rogen, Lena Dunham, Brie Larson and Judd Apatow also have condemned Weinstein and offered support for his accusers.
For his part, Weinstein — who co-produced a litany of popular films like “Pulp Fiction” and Oscar-winner “Shakespeare In Love” — has claimed innocence of some of the accusations, but also admitted to unseemly behavior and offered apologies for it.
“I cannot be more remorseful about the people I hurt and I plan to do right by all of them,” Weinstein said.
The Weinstein Company board announced the move Sunday with a statement:
“In light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days, the directors of The Weinstein Company — his brother and company co-founder Robert Weinstein, Lance Maerov, Richard Koenigsberg and Tarak Ben Ammar — have determined, and have informed Harvey Weinstein, that his employment with The Weinstein Company is terminated, effective immediately.”
The decision to oust Weinstein came after a frenetic three days of tense and sometimes turbulent negotiations, stemming from a Thursday New York Times story documenting a long history of sexual harassment allegations made against the 65-year-old Weinstein by ex-employees and associates that led to legal deals.
Among the complaints outlined in the story was by actress Ashley Judd, who said Weinstein made improper sexual advances to her.
The entertainment publication Variety reported Sunday that Weinstein came to Los Angeles this weekend in a bid to save his job and refused when the board asked him to resign.
When Weinstein also turned down a board offer to cash him out, he was fired, Variety said.
Weinstein’s fall from power likely was sealed when new accusers stepped forward, including British writer Liza Campbell and television reporter Lauren Sivan, who both claim to have experienced graphic encounters with him.
As the story snowballed into an avalanche, Weinstein attorney Lisa Bloom resigned on Saturday, as did legal adviser Lanny Davis.
Bloom’s work for Weinstein had drawn criticism in some quarters since her firm usually defends women in such cases.
According to the Times story, Weinstein has reached at least eight legal settlements with women over allegations of sexual harassment, with his accusers including Judd and actress Rose McGowan.
On Friday, Weinstein Company board members Marc Lasry, Dirk Ziff and Tim Sarnoff resigned.
The Weinstein company announced late Friday the hiring of attorney John Kiernan, along with his partners Matthew Fishbein, a former chief assistant U.S. attorney; and Helen Cantwell, a former federal and state prosecutor. The attorneys will “undertake a thorough and independent investigation and report to the full board on the results of that investigation,” according to the company.
Weinstein’s brother, Bob, and COO David Glasser will lead the company for now.
–Wire reports, staff